The Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival (LAAPFF), presented annually by Visual Communications (VC), the nation's premiere Asian Pacific American media arts center, announced today the Opening Night selection for the upcoming 35th edition of the Festival. LAAPFF returns May 2-10, 2019 and will present films in Little Tokyo, Downtown Los Angeles, and the L.A. Live Entertainment Center.
This year’s Festival kicks off with the World Premiere of YELLOW ROSE, written and directed by first time feature female filmmaker Diane Paragas. The film stars Tony Award nominee Eva Noblezada, Tony Award winning actress and Grammy nominee Lea Salonga, country music star Dale Watson, Liam Booth, Gustavo Gomez (“The Walking Dead”), Libby Villari (“Boyhood”), and Princess Punzalan (“Mula Sa Puso”), and features original songs written by Watson, Paragas, Noblezada and cast.
YELLOW ROSE tells the story of a headstrong Filipino girl, from a small Texas town, fighting to pursue her country music dreams while facing the threat of deportation.
"I am so humbled that our film has been chosen for this honor,” says Paragas. “Yellow Rose has taken over 15 years to make and it couldn’t come at a more important time when anti-immigrant sentiment is at an all-time high. This is a story for everyone facing challenges in finding their voice, their dreams and, more importantly, their home.”
“The Festival is excited to showcase Diane Paragas as our first ever Filipina American Opening Night presentation”, says Francis Cullado, Executive Director of Visual Communications. “We feel that YELLOW ROSE 's themes stemming from our collective experiences of what defines American can create cultural cross-connections throughout our diverse communities.”
Paragas is also producing along with Cecilia Mejia, Orian Williams, Rey Cuerdo and Co-Producer Jeremiah Abraham. YELLOW ROSE is supported by New York based Asian CineVision, Cinematografo Originals (ABS-CBN Global), and was awarded the Ravenal Foundation Feature Film Grant last year by the New York Women in Film & Television.
Members of the cast and crew will be in attendance for a Q&A following the World Premiere screening. YELLOW ROSE screens on Opening Night, Thursday, May 2, 2019 at 7PM at the Aratani Theatre at the Japanese American Cultural & Community Center (JACCC) in Little Tokyo, Downtown Los Angeles.
LAAPFF launches the celebration of Asian Pacific Heritage Month through this year’s slate of over 100 films from both Asian Pacific American and Asian international artists. For over three decades, the Festival has presented close to 4,000 films by Asian Pacific American and Asian international talent. This year the Festival has over a dozen films from local filmmakers.
LAAPFF will announce its full line up on Monday, April 1, 2019. Visual Communications Member presale ticketing will be available from Monday, April 1st to Friday, April 5th; ticketing for the general public will be available starting Friday, April 5th at 5:00pm PST.
For program information and a complete listing of sponsors and partners, please visit festival.vcmedia.org.